Cornwall’s Vineyards – a Guide to the Cornish Wine Scene
Cornwall’s mild climate and long sunlight hours make it one of the finest regions for wine production in the UK. 2018 saw wine producers across the country hailing it as ‘the harvest of the century’, following a record-breaking summer and an unusually warm autumn, which resulted in excellent quality grapes with high yields.
Cornwall’s vineyards received recognition at the Wines of Great Britain 2019 Awards, with golds for Trevibban Mill’s Orion Skin Fermented 2018 and Camel Valley’s Bacchus Dry 2018.
With this in mind, why not indulge in a spot of wine tasting? Here’s where to sample the county’s best wine in our ‘Top Cornish Vineyards Guide’:
This prestigious Padstow based vineyard is nestled in the heart of the Cornish countryside and is a working vineyard close to the dramatic North Cornish coast. Trevibban Mill is an award-winning vineyard known for its stunning collection of Cornish wines and cider and locally sourced food where you can relax in the lush surroundings of 11,000 vines and 1,700 apple trees.
At the centre of the vineyard is a striking contemporary building which houses the winery and cellar, a stylish tasting room/bar and a huge event space, the ‘Upper Deck’. From the terrace you can enjoy magnificent views of St Issey Valley and soak up the scents and sounds of the Mill’s wild flower garden – all while sipping on estate made, award winning wines.
The Trevibban wines are either named after local beach beauty spots (e.g. Harlyn and Constantine) or pay homage to their flock of Southdown sheep (Black Ewe and Black Ram) who roam the vineyards.
The in-house restaurant, Appleton’s at the Vineyard – listed in the Michelin Guide 2017 – gives visitors a wonderful opportunity to drink a glass or two alongside Cornwall’s famously good local produce. In our opinion, Trevibban Mill is a place not to be missed, it’s a only a 3 mile drive from Padstow!
OPEN Wednesday – Sunday, 12 noon – 5pm (including Bank Holidays)
Dogs welcome, but must be kept on a lead at all times.
Image by Trevibban Mill Vineyard
Towards the south coast is Knightor Winery, located near the Eden Project and nestled above St Austell Bay. This ‘boutique winery’ is set in a beautiful courtyard surrounded by converted old farm buildings and has a romantic, rustic feel about it – the perfect place to sit and enjoy a carafe of the county’s finest on a sunny summer’s day!
Wine produced here comes from vineries at Portscatho and St Martin’s, over 17,000 vines line the sun-drenched slopes of the Roseland Peninsular. Try some of their award winning white, red and sparkling wine. The winery kitchen is open every Sunday serving a delicious home-cooked menu of seasonal specials.
Wine shop open: Wednesday to Sunday 11am – 4pm
Events barn and bar open: Sundays 11am – 4pm
Sunday Lunch served 12 noon – 2:30pm
Image by Knightor Winery
Wine aficionados will delight in a visit to Polgoon, an award-winning vineyard near Penzance, dedicated to producing a range of artisan Cornish wines, ciders and juices on their family-run vineyard and orchard. They produce a fabulous range of white, red, and rosé, making it hard to decide what to try first!
The shop, which stocks their range of wine and ciders, is open year-round and tours commence in Easter. A typical vineyard tour takes around 90 minutes with guests learning about the process before enjoying a tasting. Make sure you head over to the Vine House, a wonderful sunny outside seating area, but it does have an undercover area for shelter from light rain or more inclement Cornish weather – in other words, dress to keep warm! Here you can choose from local crab sandwiches, perhaps with a glass of award-winning Bacchus white wine, or perhaps a charcuterie platter with coppa, salami and chorizo from Cornish Charcuterie washed down with a bottle of Polgoon Gold Cider!
Vineyard tours and tastings take place on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 2pm from April-October.
Feel free to bring your dog along, you’ll find a dog bowl full of fresh water outside the shop and a place to tie them up.
Image by Polgoon Vineyard
This highly regarded, world renowned Cornish vineyard, Camel Valley, located halfway between Wadebridge and Bodmin, has been producing award-winning, world-class wines in this beautiful corner of Cornwall since 1989. Between April and October you can join one of the guided tours followed by a fun wine tasting session, beginning with their most famous wine, Cornwall Brut!
Alternatively, settle yourself on the beautiful suntrap terrace overlooking the vineyard and simply enjoy a glass of their famous sparkling wine. Their wines (both still and sparkling) have won many national and international awards over the past three decades and as a result they can be found in many prestigious places all over the country and beyond.
- Cornwall’s Camel Valley has become the first English wine producer to be granted a royal warrant
- Camel Valley wines were on the menu at the State Banquet held at Buckingham Palace in honour of the King and Queen of Spain last Wednesday 12 July.
- Camel Valley was also served at a star studded reception to celebrate the Duchess of Cornwall’s birthday at Clarence House the following day.
- Their 2013 Camel Valley brut sparkling wine is served in British Airways First Class.
- Fortnum and Mason’s own label English sparkling wine is none other than Camel Valley Cornwall Brut
The best news is, it’s an easy cycle ride along the Camel Trail to visit the Camel Valley Vineyard!
Images by Camel Valley Vineyard
Head south of St Austell and to the east side of the Roseland Peninsula, close to The Lost Gardens of Heligan and you will find the small village of St Ewe and Bosue Vineyard. This boutique style vineyard and winery is a little off the beaten track, but worth it for the opportunity to taste their ‘Cornish wines from Cornish vines’.
The family process the grapes and all the wine is made and bottled at the winery. Bosue is famous for its white, rose and sparkling award-winning wines, so why not enjoy a glass or two overlooking the valley and vines from the decked seating area.
Opening times vary, so refer to Bosue Vineyard.
Image by Bosue Vineyard
If you decide to visit several vineyards in a day and make the most of your wine tasting excursion, look no further than Cornish Wine Tours.
They run tours daily from Padstow, picking you up and driving you to three vineyards. You’ll sample an array of quality, award winning wines at each location, as well as enjoying a delicious three course lunch at one of the vineyards. If you find a particular favourite Cornish wine you can benefit from buying at a more favourable rate! Sit back and relax as you’re pleasantly guided from vineyard to vineyard!